Friday, January 29, 2021

January 29, 2021

Good afternoon-

Today brought us to the halfway point in the school year. We are excited to start Term 3 on Monday. Please read this thoroughly for important information about the next semester. We have some significant changes coming.

Change to Report Card date:
Due to the transition between terms we will need a few extra days to get report cards ready. All grades will be shared in iStudent/iParent on Tuesday, February 9 after 3pm.

Changes to Learning Format and Time:
Starting Monday, February 1 all teachers will be teaching their classes synchronously. All students are expected to be present "in class" regardless of their cohort day. Students at home must be logged into class, following along with instruction or any other teacher direction. 

We are also increasing synchronous learning time on Wednesday. 

The new schedule begins on Wednesday, February 3. 

C Period 8:35-9:20

E Period 9:25-10:10

10 Minute Break

F Period 10:20-11:05

D Period 11:10-11:55

Please be mindful of this and plan accordingly. It has always been the expectation that students are engaged in school work from 8:35am-2:35/55pm. Please remember that failure to attend class, whether in person or remotely, could result in a loss of credit for the class. 

Course Recommendations for 2021-2022

Teachers are currently making course recommendations (January 19 - February 5)

(Students have been encouraged to discuss their course interests with their teacher.)

Class meetings to review course recommendations- February 3 

(GoogleMeet links will be sent Wednesday morning)

11th grade- 12:30pm

10th grade- 1:15pm

9th grade- 2:00pm

Students are asked to please log on to the meetings to hear important information about course requests for next year. Students must use their iStudent account to approve their recommended courses and choose electives.

Students approve courses and choose electives- February 1-12

Student's Quick Start Guide for Student Course Recommendations

Parents will make final approval- February 22- March 5

If you have some time this weekend please take a moment to complete the attached form:
I would love to surprise our educators with some mid-year pick-me-up messages from parents and students.

Finally, COVID fatigue is real for all of us. Most students are doing great with the safety expectations. Please have a conversation with your child about the importance of following the rules. Whether you believe in them or not, they are requirements for attendance. I appreciate your support with this. 

Have a wonderful weekend. 

Friday, January 15, 2021

January 22, 2021

Good afternoon and happy Friday-

We are just one week away from the halfway point of the 2020-2021 school year. Term 2 ends next Friday and report cards will be available on Friday, February 5 after 3pm. 

Last night School Committee approved a few things that impact AHS students:

1. The graduation requirement for community service for the class of 2021 has been waived. This waiver is for just this school year. Students are encouraged to continue to find safe ways to give back to their community. 

2. The athletic eligibility requirement was updated to reflect our current block schedule. Students must pass 3 of their 4 classes in the previous marking period to participate in athletics. Students who only passed 2 courses are eligible for a one-time waiver to participate. 

Course registration timelines: SY 2021-2022: 
We are excited to be starting the process of planning for 2021-2022.
Teachers are currently in the process of making course recommendations through February 5

Students will approve their course recommendations and choose electives from February 1-12
Students will be encouraged to set up meetings with teachers in person or via Google Meets to discuss any questions or concerns about recommendations.
iStudent Quick Start Guide to Student Recommendations
We will hold class meetings to review the process- February 3 
11th grade- 12:30pm
10th grade- 1:15pm
9th grade- 2:00pm

Parents make final approval- February 22- March 5

DAET, Ashland Public Schools, and Ashland's Human Services Department are excited to welcome back Linda Price, M.Ed., CAGS, on Monday, February 8th, for two virtual presentations (9:30 AM and 6:30 PM) of Surviving to Thriving: Supporting your Family's Stress, Sadness, and Loss through mindfulness. The pandemic has amplified our need to redefine health and recognize areas that need attention. Linda will teach parents/caregivers strategies and techniques for supporting yourself & your family today and beyond this challenging year.

Thursday, January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Good afternoon-

As we head into the long weekend I am hopeful we will have students in the building next week. Thank you to all of you who tested on Monday and are working hard to help stop the spread. Working together to bring down the numbers is what will get us back to school in the building. 

As a reminder, there is no school tomorrow for students. It is a professional day for staff. There is also no school on Monday due to the MLK Jr. holiday. 

I am including here reminders sent to students on January 3 (I will re-share them on Monday). Please remind your student of these expectations.

  • Make sure you have your well-fitting masks ready to go as we head back to the building. We have some extras in the office if you need one. Students who do not wear their mask properly will be sent home. 
  • Attendance is taken each day so we know who is physically in the building. If you are home for a day your cohort is in school you will be marked absent. There is no consequence for this however. We appreciate students who are staying home because they are not feeling well, have been in a large group, or have traveled.
  • Wear a warm jacket and appropriate footwear to school! Many teachers will continue to take outdoor mask breaks. It's a great way to stretch your legs and chat with classmates and/or your teacher. 
  • Bring your Chromebook every day. If you have an issue with your Chromebook please fill out the request for assistance form on the website and we have loaners available in the main office. Let us know how we can help you. Our IT department works to make sure all of the technology that is accessible is safe for students.

If you are traveling out of state this weekend please remember the APS Travel Policy. 

Student/Family Travel Policy
Please find attached links to the Ashland Public Schools - Student Travel Form.  Each link will bring you directly to the school where your child(ren) attends.  Attached is also a Return from Travel Certification of Compliance that must be filled out before travelers can enter schools. I have also included the School Committee Policy on COVID Travel again for your reference.

We have two weeks left of term 2 and teachers will begin the recommendation process for the 2021-2022 school year on Tuesday. Teachers will make recommendations through February 5. The window for students to approve teacher recommendations and choose their electives will open on February 1. 
I will send more information on the timeline and process in the next week or two. Please encourage your child to start thinking about courses for next year.

Have a wonderful long weekend!

Friday, January 8, 2021

January 8, 2021

Good afternoon-

I hope you had a good first week of 2021. While we wish were were back in the building we are glad to be able to continue moving forward with learning. Teachers are expressing increasing concerns with students not engaging or letting them know about other commitments during the school day. Please remind your student that they should be committed to school from 8:30am-2:55pm. We know remote learning is hard. Students are required to log-in to each class and participate, just as they would in the classroom when we are in school. 

As you know, we will continue with remote learning next week. Monday we encourage all students to be tested. Teachers will provide asynchronous work and attendance will not be required if you are being tested. Students will park in the student lot and enter the building through the main front door. Please let me know if you have any questions. The information and sign up link from Supt Adams is below.

Friday, January 15 is a teacher professional day. Students do not have school on this day.

As always, please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions.

AHS COVID testing: This announcement is extremely important for ALL students who attend Ashland High School.  Through the great effort of Sergeant Ed Burman and Head Nurse Audrey LaCroix we are pleased to announce that on Monday, January 11, 2021 we are able to offer a FREE COVID-19 PCR test for ALL AHS Students, faculty, and staff.  Below are the testing directions and required pre registration link.  I want to encourage ALL students, faculty, and staff to take advantage of this opportunity so we can work towards getting AHS back into the hybrid learning environment as quickly as possible.

Links to information in:

Important Logistics:

Who:  All AHS students, faculty, and staff who are NOT currently isolated or quarantined
When:  Monday, January 11, 2021 from 8:00AM - 3:00PM 
Where:  Ashland High School Gymnasium - Entrance is through the main doors of Ashland High School.  Masks must be worn and 6 feet of physical distance maintained.
How:  Folks must register for the Nasal Swab PCR test by filling out the form attached to this link: 
AHS COVID TESTING REGISTRATION. There are no specific times but registration is required.

Testing:  This is a Nasal Swab PCR which will require the insertion of a swab in the nasal cavity. This test is the most reliable test available for identification of COVID-19.

Result Privacy:  Aside from the test taker, the Board of Health and School Nurse will have access to this important information as any positive cases will need to be contacted and tracing will need to commence.

Should you have questions please do not hesitate to reach out to me.  Again, I want to encourage any and all students, faculty, and staff to participate in the testing. 

If you are not feeling well, if someone in your family is not feeling well, or if you are quarantined or in isolation, DO NOT come for a test.
Jim Adams, Superintendent of Schools
Pronouns: He/His/Him